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September 27, 2001: USGS Scientists Send Test Results to EPA and FEMA Indicating that WTC Dust Has High PH

After USGS scientists complete their analysis of the dust samples collected in New York City (see September 17, 2001-September 19, 2001-) —which found asbestos, an “alphabet soup of heavy metals,” and an extremely high pH level (see September 20, 2001) —the team emails the results to “all the government contacts the team had” including people at the EPA and FEMA, as well as to the federal emergency response coordinator. The EPA never informs the public of the dust’s high pH. “We anticipated that the results would have been shared with the people on the ground, those at risk, but it looks like the information never got to those who needed it,” Geoffrey Plumlee, a geochemist, will later tell the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. (US Geological Survey 11/27/2001; Schneider 2/10/2002; Schneider 2/10/2002; US Geological Survey 10/2002 pdf file) Some scientists will suggest that the dust’s high pH is a major cause of what will come to be known as the “WTC cough” (see September 9, 2002).


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